For opponents in the South Sequoia League, Blye Escalante is a familiar face. "He gets to the key, he gets to the free and then he'll hit those threes," said first year Chavez basketball coach Alfonso Hernandez. Hey if it rhymes it works.
As the league's top scorer (averaging 20 points a game), Blye's certainly the point of the Titans' attack. "He leads the offense and pushes the court," said junior center Javier Gallardo.
His high speeds in transition is something that's aligned perfectly with coach Hernandez. "If you're open shoot it," he said of his team's offensive strategy. "We have no one on a red light."
While Chavez has had good teams in years past, Hernandez says the 2017 squad is a different kind of special. "Guys are mentally tougher this year. They have a confidence that they can come back from any deficit."
That mentality has led to a historic start. No Chavez basketball team has ever won a league title but after an 8-0 start to league play and a 19-1 overall record, the boys hope to add a matching banner that can hang next to the girl's 2015 poster.
The Titans' winning change can be tied directly to Escalante's style of play. "I started being more physical and going up (to the hoop) harder," he said. "I just want it bad this year."
Thanks to his explosive start, the Titans are in position to finally take a title.
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